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  1. #1
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    My turn... NEW TOY!

    Well, it's nothing on the same scale as some recent purchases in the community but nevertheless I'm now the proud owner of a Logitech Harmony 880 Universal remote, and I want to share some of my thoughts about it. It was in my cart for quite a while and I'd been watching the price, so when it got down to where I could afford it without second thought I pulled the trigger. It has since gone back up about $13.00 so I think my timing was right as well.

    First off I was pleased with how much attention was paid to the packaging. The remote itself was placed in clam shell plastic and in a sturdy cardboard box. The big plus here was that by pulling out the three or four staples holding the two sections of plastic together it was very easy to remove the remote. This is important to me because I just HATE the typical packaging that makes you have to get out the tin snips and hope you don't veer into some important text inside while cutting. And I also usually end up bleeding at some point when I get stabbed by a sharp edge hanging out.

    The remote is almost identical in size and shape to the Tivo remote I got with DirecTV, with the DTV remote being slightly heavier but no more ergonomically comfortable than the 880. The 880 is very appealing from a visual standpoint; nice chrome like appointments where some of the function buttons are placed, which form a U shape around the display. The display itself, although smallish, is in a resolution that even I can interpret. BTW, the display is customizable with options for loading different background styles... pretty neat IMO.

    Loading the software onto my PC, which can blow the doors off anything Apple can come up with at its price point, was a breeze and after it installed it went to the Logitech Harmony website to update the s/w to the latest rev. The update took all of maybe a minute to complete, with no hicups. After you create an account on the remote's website you can then start setting up the "Activity" keys which is where this remote shines. The manner in which the product IR codes are loaded, which come from the website after you identify your equipment, eliminates for the most part the need to 'learn' the remote with a particular component's own remote. There were a few cases though where I did have to go through that process as the 880 didn't recognize some of the individual device's functions. But after I did this and tried out the programmed buttons, everything that I wanted on and set to the proper states worked. I've still got to educate myself (read... L.J. WHAT THE HE!! DO I DO NOW?!?!?!) regarding some of the programming aspects since I only played around with it for an hour or so, but I'm confident that it's going to eventually eliminate the need for playing piano with the four, sometimes five remotes taking up space better used for holding beers and Margaritas on my coffee table.

    Anyway, that's the long & short of it for now. I'll be sure to brag more about it when I become more familiar with all of its bells & whistles.

    (Shameless plug): The Harmony 1000 Touch-screen remote has drastically dropped in price to the $250 range from about $500, so...

  2. #2
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    Sounds great. Someday I'll have to go down this same path.

    Congrats on the new toy.
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  3. #3
    Suspended PeruvianSkies's Avatar
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    It's interesting how in this hobby there is pretty much only ONE thing that we don't want a lot of ....remote controls.

  4. #4
    Da Dragonball Kid L.J.'s Avatar
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    And may I add how reliable they are too. My kid dropped my entire remote in a cup of water last night and trust me it was soaked. I opened the battery compartment and water poured out. It stopped working shortly after. I dried it off and let it sit over night with the battery compartment open. Gave it a go this morning and it popped on like nothing had ever happened. Even my settings are all still there. Go figure.

    Now I have to find a higher place to keep it.

    Side note:Please don't try this out for yourself, your results may vary

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeruvianSkies
    It's interesting how in this hobby there is pretty much only ONE thing that we don't want a lot of ....remote controls.
    Yeah, no joke. I feel like I'm in the middle of a game of Fossball (sp?) everytime I want to watch TV or listen to music.

    P.S. PS... you were supposed to attack me. The highlighted text was FYI...

  6. #6
    Forum Regular pixelthis's Avatar
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    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by Rich-n-Texas
    Yeah, no joke. I feel like I'm in the middle of a game of Fossball (sp?) everytime I want to watch TV or listen to music.

    P.S. PS... you were supposed to attack me. The highlighted text was FYI...
    To get a universal remote is the beginning of HT knowledge.
    Before you just have an amalgamation of equipment, with a universal they start to work together, in a form of synergy, especially when you master macros, which do several things at once.
    Another great thing about universals, the location of the buttons dont change, I have been through several DVD players since I got my pronto, I program the controls into the same buttons, do a little customizing and I'm ready to go.
    A universal is an essential part of any decent HT and a lot think they can do without one,
    but play your HT like a musical instrument with one remote for awhile and you won't be able to live without one.
    Congrats
    LG 42", integra 6.9, B&W 602s2, CC6 center, dm305rears, b&w
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  7. #7
    Forum Regular pixelthis's Avatar
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    Cool

    And peruvian has a rotten Apple?
    Why am I NOT surprized!
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  8. #8
    Da Dragonball Kid L.J.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich-n-Texas
    I've still got to educate myself (read... L.J. WHAT THE HE!! DO I DO NOW?!?!?!) regarding some of the programming aspects since I only played around with it for an hour or so, but I'm confident that it's going to eventually eliminate the need for playing piano with the four, sometimes five remotes taking up space better used for holding beers and Margaritas on my coffee table.
    Well, did you get everything down yet? It took me awhile and I went through the FAQ section a couple of times but I have everything working perfectly. My wife loves it, and although the main reason I got it was for her (cough,cough) I wish I would have got one a long time ago.

  9. #9
    Forum Regular pixelthis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by L.J.
    Well, did you get everything down yet? It took me awhile and I went through the FAQ section a couple of times but I have everything working perfectly. My wife loves it, and although the main reason I got it was for her (cough,cough) I wish I would have got one a long time ago.
    I KINDA preach about a unified remote, you dont have a system until you get one,
    most are resistant, but once you live with one for awhile you wonder how you got along without it
    LG 42", integra 6.9, B&W 602s2, CC6 center, dm305rears, b&w
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by pixelthis
    I but once you live with one for awhile you wonder how you got along without it
    Did you mean remote or wife?

    bill
    Speakers-Jm Labs
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by L.J.
    Well, did you get everything down yet? It took me awhile and I went through the FAQ section a couple of times but I have everything working perfectly. My wife loves it, and although the main reason I got it was for her (cough,cough) I wish I would have got one a long time ago.
    In a word: no. Here's my first predicament... I want an activity that only turns my TV and receiver on, sets the TV's input to ANT-1 (which is where my OTA antenna is connected) and allows me to change channels using one button, the same as my TV's remote that I have "favorites" set up on. Also, because of my receiver's digital input limitations, I had to send the TV's digital coax out to the "CD In" on the receiver. How do I make the remote understand where the TV's audio is going and how do I set up my favorite channels so that when I pick the device in that activities components list I'll have a display showing either a Favorites button or all of my Favorite channels with their own corresponding button? Does that make sense? Thanx.

  12. #12
    Suspended PeruvianSkies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pixelthis
    And peruvian has a rotten Apple?
    Why am I NOT surprized!
    I suppose now you are going to tell me that Apple computers suck too....maybe they are made in the same factory as Canadian speakers where they screw them together.

  13. #13
    Suspended PeruvianSkies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich-n-Texas
    Yeah, no joke. I feel like I'm in the middle of a game of Fossball (sp?) everytime I want to watch TV or listen to music.

    P.S. PS... you were supposed to attack me. The highlighted text was FYI...
    I only attack those who deserve attacking.
    and
    GEEE I wonder
    WHO that Could BE
    I will GIVE you A HINT
    about WHO that might BE, but
    YOU will have to read between the LINES of what
    I am typing here. GET IT.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich-n-Texas
    In a word: no. Here's my first predicament... I want an activity that only turns my TV and receiver on, sets the TV's input to ANT-1 (which is where my OTA antenna is connected) and allows me to change channels using one button, the same as my TV's remote that I have "favorites" set up on. Also, because of my receiver's digital input limitations, I had to send the TV's digital coax out to the "CD In" on the receiver. How do I make the remote understand where the TV's audio is going and how do I set up my favorite channels so that when I pick the device in that activities components list I'll have a display showing either a Favorites button or all of my Favorite channels with their own corresponding button? Does that make sense? Thanx.
    When you set up your activity it will ask you what input on your reciever you want to use, just tell it CD and you won't have a problem same with the tv,if it did not delete the activity and run it again.If your origional remote had a favorites button you can assign an unused button on Harmony to handle this under customize buttons.

    bill
    Speakers-Jm Labs
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  15. #15
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    Thanks Bill. I'll try that when I get home.

    Maybe I should set up an account on my work computer...

  16. #16
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    Congrats on your 880, Rich. One thing I noticed is that Harmony continuously updates their database so it's a good idea to go back once in a while and log on with your remote plugged in. For example, when I went in to program the sequence for starting our Wii, it actually updated the font and format of the AVR control buttons as well. This was really cool because I had been meaning to re-arrange the buttons as the original layout was utterly cryptic. Harmony had simplified the layout considerably and buttons were now logically organized, which a lot more than I can say for the original format. This for a 4 year old AVR!

    There is a website that provides small avatars that you can download onto the 880 for your "Favorites" buttons. This way, you can use ESPN, HBO, Cartoon Network, or numerous other channel's logos instead of just the number. It looks really cool and is very easy to do. I can't remember the site address, but just google it and it should be easy to find.

    One other tip; the 880 is a finicky little sunuvagun about sitting on the charging base. Every month or so, get a Qtip and clean out the small contact recess on the base and the contacts on the remote. The slightest dust build-up will cause the remote to not connect correctly and therefore not charge.


    Hope this helps.

  17. #17
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    Thanks TS. All the hints and tips I can get here will certainly help because it looks like at this point I've got a lot of work to do before I get this thing to do everything it's capable of.

    Y'all should be proud of me... I installed album art from Pink Floyd's "The Wall" as my background image. Looks cool!

  18. #18
    Forum Regular pixelthis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by musicman1999
    Did you mean remote or wife?

    bill
    My girlfriends have all eventually said the same thing, me or that D@$#&^
    stereo!
    I sure miss all of them, but no wife, no WAF (waf: Wife Acceptance Factor)
    As for MACS they ARE toys, integrated pieces of crapolla, pretty much like the Harmony remote they are intended for those who don't care to get their hands dirty.
    But at least the Harmony has introduced many to the joys of a unified remote.
    You can sit at your MAC (Macs Are Crap) and "download" whatever the good folks
    at Harmony decide to let you have, I'll keep composing configuration files on my Pronto edit, using the computer I built, a P.C with three hard drives and a lightscribe DVD burner,
    soon to be augmented by a RAID based server with four 500gb drives

    And MACS arent built, they're grown in PODS
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by pixelthis
    My girlfriends have all eventually said the same thing, me or that D@$#&^
    stereo!
    I sure miss all of them, but no wife, no WAF (waf: Wife Acceptance Factor)
    As for MACS they ARE toys, integrated pieces of crapolla, pretty much like the Harmony remote they are intended for those who don't care to get their hands dirty.
    But at least the Harmony has introduced many to the joys of a unified remote.
    You can sit at your MAC (Macs Are Crap) and "download" whatever the good folks
    at Harmony decide to let you have, I'll keep composing configuration files on my Pronto edit, using the computer I built, a P.C with three hard drives and a lightscribe DVD burner,
    soon to be augmented by a RAID based server with four 500gb drives

    And MACS arent built, they're grown in PODS
    I took you off my ignore list for this?!?!?! First you're kind enough to congratulate me on my purchase, then you almost immediately bad-mouth the product. WTF???

    And... did you mean the GOOD FOLKS AT LOGITECH???

    Time to flip the switch again...

  20. #20
    Da Dragonball Kid L.J.'s Avatar
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    Sorry I didn't get back to you Rich. Musicman and Top broke it down pretty nicely for ya though.

  21. #21
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    I'm just getting started L.J. Not to worry.

  22. #22
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    Quick question:

    I have the DirecTV R-10 satellite receiver/PVR. Should I tell the remote that it's a PVR device or a satellite receiver device? I think there are different settings depending on which type it's called right? I tried both but neither gave me the device control buttons I was expecting to see.

  23. #23
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    I have a cable dvr and i told the remote it was a dvr and it works great.Btw those folks at Logitech are great if you ever need them,the best tech support i have ever used by far.


    bill
    Speakers-Jm Labs
    Disc player-Sim Audio Moon Calypso
    Pre-amp-Sim Audio P-5.3 SE
    dac= sim audio moon 300d

    Amp-Sim Audio Moon I-3
    Display-Toshiba CRT
    Wires and Cables-Kimber,Straight Wire, ixos, Gutwire and shunyata research
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    Remote-- Harmony 1100

    Power-- Monster

  24. #24
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    I deleted the Satellite device and added a new "DTV"(PVR) device and it seems now I have more functionality with it. Not 100% sure though because some of the soft keys aren't performing the operation I'd expect, but that's okay, I'll get things figured out eventually.
    Quote Originally Posted by L.J.
    It took me awhile and I went through the FAQ section a couple of times but I have everything working perfectly.
    Yes, it looks like the FAQ section will be the most help. I noticed that the manual which I downloaded makes references to things on the remote home page that aren't there. For instance: the manual tells me I can add favorite channels by clicking on the "My Preferences" button, but for one thing the button label is just "Preferences", and the only preferences I get to change are account info. Maybe I'm misunderstanding it, or maybe they don't update the manuals as frequently as the s/w.

    There's an entire forum on the AVS site (you know, the site where L.J. spends ALL of his time these days...) dedicated to remote controls, and a topic was started that is currently over 2900 posts long strictly for talk about the 880.

    Oh, BTW, I think I have the remote with the redesigned charging stand. The contacts on the back of the remote are in what I'd refer to as a box that's offset from the rest of the housing, and the contacts in the stand are in a recess matching the box. The remote seems to fit just fine. I like the fact that the stand does have some weight to it and it sits quite still on the shelf thanks to the soft rubber feet.
    Last edited by Rich-n-Texas; 09-13-2007 at 11:10 AM.

  25. #25
    Da Dragonball Kid L.J.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich-n-Texas
    Yes, it looks like the FAQ section will be the most help. I noticed that the manual which I downloaded makes references to things on the remote home page that aren't there. For instance: the manual tells me I can add favorite channels by clicking on the "My Preferences" button, but for one thing the button label is just "Preferences", and the only preferences I get to change are account info. Maybe I'm misunderstanding it, or maybe they don't update the manuals as frequently as the s/w.
    Ya know, I never even looked at the manual. The FAQ section answered any questions I had and you can find a link to the channel icons TS was talking about there.


    Quote Originally Posted by Rich-n-Texas
    There's an entire forum on the AVS site (you know, the site where L.J. spends ALL of his time these days...) dedicated to remote controls, and a topic was started that is currently over 2900 posts long strictly for talk about the 880.

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